Some misc Nicot chat ... - Page 3
Page 3 of 3 FirstFirst 123
Results 41 to 50 of 50
  1. #41
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Derry, New Hampshire
    Posts
    2,295

    Default Re: Some misc Nicot chat ...

    also playing with some testing. I added the nicot three days ago. 2 days ago added the queen but forgot to plug the hole. duh. So put her in two days ago. Checked yesterday and couldn't see much. Checked today and saw what i thought was laying down larvae. I released the queen and took off the cover. Will check tomorrow and put in frame if they are not removed.
    interesting thing in this test is i used half chinese cheap cell cups and half previously used cell cups. wondering if the space available to them has any bearing on why they remove eggs/larvae. This 5 frame nuc has at least two frames wall to wall capped brood. I have to remove a frame tomorrow to keep them from swarming.
    Terrence

  2. Remove Advertisements
    BeeSource.com
    Advertisements
     

  3. #42
    Join Date
    Jun 2019
    Location
    Yakima, washington
    Posts
    1

    Default Re: Some misc Nicot chat ...

    hi,
    I am new here, and a relatively new bee keeper. I bought a Chinese Nicot set online. I was having no luck at all with it. After a week of secluding the queen in Nicot cassette I had no cells with royal jelly and few nurse bees in the nicot box. After verifying there were eggs in the cells, I pulled the excluder off and three days later I had royal jelly. I began to question why there were few bees inside with the queen and measured the openings of the queen excluder. I found that they were only .150 wide. Standard queen excluders are .163 wide. This is not a lot but may be enough to discourage bees from entering the Nicot. I opened them up slightly with a small flat file and plan on retrying. Anyone who has noticed similar problems may want to measure their queen excluder openings.

  4. #43
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    England, UK
    Posts
    1,455

    Default Re: Some misc Nicot chat ...

    Quote Originally Posted by dudelt View Post
    The last time I tried this method, once I saw eggs in the cups on day 4, I pulled the plug on the face and let the queen out. The next day, all the eggs were gone. I will not be doing that again.
    Wish I could fathom out why they do this ...

    I had planned on posting an update yesterday - but I spent the day 'spitting feathers' as I was so annoyed. By painting wax on the face-plate I've now got the queen to lay-up within 24-36 hrs. But - just as with yourself - 3 days later and the cupboard is completely bare. Not a single larva or remaining egg. And the weather isn't helping any - rain on most days, with only brief weather-windows for access. Hardly ideal for working to a rigid timetable.

    As I've got starter hives straining at the leash, I'll put grafts into those on the next halfway decent day, and meanwhile try the Nicot L/Cage one last time ...
    What I plan on doing is - just as soon as the eggs are laid, and before removing the queen - to shake-off all the brood combs, and 'bed-and-breakfast' those in a stash hive for 3 days - so that the laying cage holds the only eggs in town. That way, the colony has no choice but to feed and rear them. My only uncertainty is where to stash the queen (in a mailing cage) during this period - in or out of the subject hive ? Dunno - will have to think about that.
    Shouldn't need to have to do this, of course, but I'm fast running out of ideas.
    LJ
    A Heretics Guide to Beekeeping http://heretics-guide.atwebpages.com/

  5. #44
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    England, UK
    Posts
    1,455

    Default Re: Some misc Nicot chat ...

    Quote Originally Posted by mtrettig View Post
    hi,
    I am new here, and a relatively new bee keeper. I bought a Chinese Nicot set online. I was having no luck at all with it ...
    Just to say "Welcome Aboard", and that what you've posted is an interesting and useful observation. I also purchased a Chinese kit (have 3 Laying Cages now - 2 genuine, and one Chinese) and I also noticed that the Chinese QX plate looked a little 'tight', so the slots were checked by inserting a pair of coins I use for this purpose - and they appear just right for my natural-sized bees, which supports your observation that they may well be too tight for bees raised on conventional foundation.

    In general, I find the Chinese kit to be good value for money. Their cell-cups can be 'hit and miss' though - the ones which came with the kit were very poor: dark brown and almost impossible to see through, and many of the cell-cup lips were rough and badly 'flashed'.
    But the cell-cups of a separate purchase were fine - nicely translucent and of much better quality, although not as good as the genuine Nicot cups.
    LJ
    A Heretics Guide to Beekeeping http://heretics-guide.atwebpages.com/

  6. #45
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Seattle WA
    Posts
    1,154

    Default Re: Some misc Nicot chat ...

    I finally got to the good part. I moved the larvae with the cups from the cassette to the queen rearing frame. When I looked at it earlier today I saw 10 or so that had larvae and was hoping for more 9 hours later. Almost every cup had an egg but only 12 had larvae in them. I should have waited a day but to be honest, I am a bit tired of waiting. The queen has been sequestered for 6 days and that is a net loss of bees for the hive of about 10-15%. I tried to take a picture of the larvae but it is way too blurry to post.

    Regardless of how many actually take, I doubt I will use this system again. To compare with grafting, there are some similarities. You still need a queenless starter hive, a finishing hive and mating nucs. My issues with this process are as follows:
    1. The queen is stopped from laying for a minimum of 4 days
    2. Grant Gillard's book "NICOT Queen Rearing" clearly states that after using the cassette, the queen if frequently superceded. If you have an excellent queen, do not use her unless you really don't care is she is superceded. Thus, you will hesitate to use your best stock.
    3. The timing is all based on when the queen decides to start laying in the cassette. You might be checking for larvae and eggs every day for a week.
    4. Every time you have to check the hive, it is a major disruption.

    The good things,
    1. The cups, the holders and the hair roller cages are excellent! I use these for grafting and they work great.
    2. Transferring the cups to the cup holders on the queen rearing frame is super easy
    3. If you have a horrible fear of grafting or shaky hands or very bad eyesight, this could be a good option
    4. I was really glad the larvae was not ready yesterday. The weather was horrible. If the timing forced yesterday on me, I would have been screwed

  7. #46
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Derry, New Hampshire
    Posts
    2,295

    Default Re: Some misc Nicot chat ...

    So 2 days ago i released the queen and took off the cover. Figured today would be day 4 and perfect time to move them. when i released the queen there were all eggs laid. some were not as i reused some cups. But they all should have been day 4 or 5 today. Went and pulled them and found some at day 1 or 2!! wtf. intent on transferring them today i did so and put hair roller cages on the cups. Going to go back in a day or 2 and take those off so they can make some queens. figured if i put in just eggs they would just remove them. hoping this way they hatch and i take off the cage and they make them. The new Chinese cups from amazon had more eggs then the used and polished cups. i find this really strange. One thing i noticed was the Chinese ones are just a hair taller so the eggs were not centered. They were more towards the side of the cup.
    Terrence

  8. #47
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    England, UK
    Posts
    1,455

    Default Re: Some misc Nicot chat ...

    Quote Originally Posted by dudelt View Post
    .
    What you've written was - overall - a really good assessment. So many points with which I agree wholeheartedly, but I'd just like to expand upon a couple of them:

    You say that "The queen is stopped from laying for a minimum of 4 days" - well, that's not necessarily true. In theory, she only needs to be confined for 24 hrs, providing she begins to lay immediately. But in practice - yes - it can be much longer than this. Can be a week, and with daily disruptions ...

    I haven't read Grant Gillard's book, and although supersedure may be his experience, I've yet to witness this. It's easy to understand 'why' though, as the queen is confined behind a QX, thus there will presumably be the same level of reduction in footprint pheromone as seen when a queen is placed behind a QX separating a stack of two vertical boxes. And the longer the queen is confined, the more likely supersedure is to take place. But - it's very strange that I've never seen this, despite lengthy confinements.

    Finally - the weather. Oh yes - I can fully endorse your comment about 'being screwed' when needing to adhere to a fixed timetable (as opposed to grafting, when a person can be 'in and out' during one visit whenever there's a brief favourable weather-window).
    LJ
    A Heretics Guide to Beekeeping http://heretics-guide.atwebpages.com/

  9. #48
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Seattle WA
    Posts
    1,154

    Default Re: Some misc Nicot chat ...

    With grafting, the weather can still screw you. The day you do the grafting may be perfect but the day you move the queen cells to the mating nucs may have pouring rain. At least with grafting, you know which day to move the cells based on the day you do the grafting. With the nicot kit, that day is in limbo until the day the larvae hatch and you have no control which day that will be. The queen gets to decide it.

  10. #49
    Join Date
    Mar 2013
    Location
    Seattle WA
    Posts
    1,154

    Default Re: Some misc Nicot chat ...

    This is my final report on my Nicot queen rearing for 2019. I moved 9 beautiful queen cells from the starter/finisher to mating nucs today. The cells were huge and I cannot say I have ever seen better from one of my queen rearing attempts. All things considered, using the Nicot kit was a lot of fun. Yes, it has its drawbacks but every type of queen rearing does. Will I do it again? Surprisingly, I will. I am done with queen rearing for the year and our last big flow of the year is happening now. It will be time to start getting ready for winter soon and I will have plenty of nice young queens to tough it out. .

  11. #50
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Location
    England, UK
    Posts
    1,455

    Default Re: Some misc Nicot chat ...

    Excellent news - well done. (very envious)

    Rather than continuing to play with the Nicot L/Cage I needed to actually generate a bunch of queens for nucs, and so have reverted to grafting for the time being. My preference is to graft from white comb, and so placed some 'white comb starters' into a target brood nest which the bees quickly jumped on and drew out. But - on the day when it was time to harvest those larvae - the heavens opened-up ! My thoughts strayed back to your previous post: "With grafting, the weather can still screw you." So very true.

    Luckily, the next day presented a very short weather-window and I was able to graft a few dozen larvae during that brief time slot. These were distributed equally amongst two Cloake Board stacks and a Joseph Clemens Q-ve Starter-Finisher. I didn't bother to reverse the Cloake Board rigs due to the weather: there was no flying that day and hence no foraging, so there'd have been no returning foragers to divert up into the box holding the grafts ...

    On checking for 'take' - the JC hive had started nearly all I gave them, and one Cloake rig the same. The second of the Cloake board rigs removed all the larvae - so I don't know what the problem is there. I've given them the white comb which I'd grafted from, as by this time it contained the full range - from eggs through to 3 day old larvae - to test whether a virgin has sneaked in there, or whatever. So - might have a crop of natural q/cells as well ... or maybe not.

    Once I've generated this year's quota of queens, it'll be back to playing with the Nicot L/Cage - I ain't gonna give up !
    LJ
    A Heretics Guide to Beekeeping http://heretics-guide.atwebpages.com/

Page 3 of 3 FirstFirst 123

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •